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Florida Guide > Travelling

Flying to Tampa with British Airways Part 4

Flying to Tampa with British Airways

Part 4 – Movies, chocolate and the Bermuda Triangle

We are flying over the Atlantic Ocean on our way to Tampa, Florida, and it’s the first time we have flown to out villa by this route. My second movie finishes, I have had a little snooze, and now its time for me to change my watch. I always do this before we reach the coast of the USA, as I find it helps me to be less tired when I get there. I try to stop thinking in ‘UK’ time so that I begin to make the transition to Eastern Standard Time, but I have a constant battle with my better half. He just won’t change his watch until I force him to – no fisticuffs of course, just subtle nagging - works every time! Having changed my watch I immediately feel revived, after all its only early afternoon!

Thankfully, the baby, who has been alternating between screaming and just grizzling has tired himself out and is mercifully fast asleep. I know how difficult it must be to transport a small child across the Atlantic, but in a small metal tube for nearly 9 hours, it can be very tiring for other passengers, although the parents, themselves, appear oblivious to it all.

I look out of the window and am amazed at the cloud formations in front of me. I get my camera and start snapping away. It’s a bit of a fetish, that and those lovely red engines of the Virgin ‘planes, but today it is just clouds, and more clouds. I switch over to the flight channel which has maps of where we are and where we are going, as well as air speed etc. It always fascinates me to see how fast we are going and what the temperature is outside – can you believe it is more than minus 60 degrees centigrade? Now that IS cold! I love to watch the little ‘plane as it moves steadily across the map. I note that we are a good way across the Atlantic, and we are going to cross the Bermuda triangle on our way to Tampa. Let’s hope we don’t disappear mysteriously off the radar screen!

It’s time for another cuppa, so my husband makes his way to the galley, where he is quickly served with two fresh cups. We sit and drink our tea and indulge in some of the choccy that I have brought in my trusty handbag. We don’t normally eat chocolate, it’s a bit of a treat, but it goes down well, and I am now ready to watch my third film – ‘Brothers. ’

It’s got Natalie Portman in it as the leading lady, with Tobey Maquire as her soldier husband who is about to leave on his second tour in Afghanistan. Just before he says goodbye to his family he welcomes home his brother, Tommy, who had just been released from prison and is the black sheep of the family. When Sam’s helicopter is shot down he is presumed dead, but whilst he rots away in an horrific Taliban prison camp, Tommy takes care of his widow and children, becoming more like his responsible brother, and the strong bond which emerges between him and Grace threatens to go beyond friendship.

It is when Sam returns from his imprisonment that the trouble starts, as he has been terribly traumatised by the events which took place in Afghanistan, and which led to him making the hardest decision of his life – to obey his captors and live, or to maintain his principles and be shot. Finding his brother apparently taking his place with his wife and family, tips him over the top. It is a harrowing film, but it keeps me on the edge of my seat.

I can hardly believe that when it is over we have just an hour and a half to go, and its teatime! Along comes the trolley and we are given our tea. I have taken the precaution of purchasing some nice Marks and Spencers’ sandwiches, as I rarely eat those offered on the ‘plane. There is more tea and a chocolate biscuit to finish with. Now it’s time to get cleared up and to pack away all the bits and pieces that have helped to pass the time. The crew pass down the ‘plane collecting rubbish and headphones, and I collect up everything ready for when we land.

I look out of the window and there below me I can see the coast. We are near Jacksonville, and we turn inland towards Orlando, and I can soon see familiar landmarks, like the I-4 below us, as we continue west towards the Gulf Coast and Tampa. The plane is actually about half an hour early, and I notice that we are already on final approach. The houses which were once like tiny specks are growing larger by the minute, and roads are becoming clearly defined as we descent towards the airport.

The runway comes into view and we are down! Hooray! We have arrived at last. We are tired but somehow get a fresh burst of energy as we get ready to leave the ‘plane. It’s been a great flight, and the hours have passed in a flash.

Now just have the formalities to go through before we can be on the way to our lovely villa.

I can’t wait!

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Page added on: 2 October 2010
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